Blue Island, IL Half Of Town Burns, May 1896

BLUE ISLAND BURNED.

HALF THE CHICAGO SUBURB DESTROYED BY FIRE.

Chicago, May 17. -- Nearly half the business portion of the suburban town of Blue Island was destroyed by fire today. Altogether twenty-six buildings were consumed, entailing a total loss of about $150,000. A shifting wind was blowing almost a hurricane at the time, and the fire spread rapidly. Three hundred people who were attending a dance in Saenger hall had a narrow escape from death. The building caught fire while the dance was in progress and a stampede ensued. Many persons were bruised, though none were seriously injured. The last of the escaping crowd rushed through a cloud of smoke and heard the sound of burning timbers behind them. In spite of the efforts of the firemen, all the buildings in Grove Street, between Western Avenue and Henry Street, the West side of Henry between Grove and Vermont Streets, and all the buildings on the opposite side of Western Avenue were completely destroyed.

St. Paul Globe Minnesota 1896-05-18